“I know my thoughtless words and actions have hurt people and I apologize,” Guzman posted to social media on Wednesday. “I am truly sorry, hold myself accountable and take full responsibility for my defensiveness and ignorance. I support the Black Community with my whole heart and I am educating myself and listening with an open heart and mind. I promise to use this experience to learn and grow and make real change.”
All of this stems back to an Instagram Live broadcast on Sunday, during which Guzman was asked about his wife’s use of the N-word in 2011.
“I have plenty of friends — Black, white, Asian, Indian, whatever they are, Korean — and we make fun of each other’s races all the time,” he responded. “We call each other slurs all the time. We don’t get butthurt at all because we know the actual person, we know who each other are. We know that we’re not trying to bring each other down. So, what are y’all trying to get at? You’re trying to prove that somebody that’s not racist is racist? Nah. You don’t have that power. There is no racist energy coming from this household at all.”
Shortly thereafter, Guzman’s co-stars — including Oliver Stark and Aisha Hinds — condemned his statement on Twitter, with Stark saying, “There is absolutely no excuse for the use of the N-word. It belongs to the Black community only and I absolutely don’t agree with it being used by anyone else under any circumstances.” Some 9-1-1 fans even began to call for Guzman’s firing.
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Guzman issued his first apology (of sorts) on Monday, clarifying that he “misspoke” when he said he and his wife used “slurs.” He continued to say, “I do not condone the use of the N-word by any non-Black person. That includes all Latinos. That’s not our word.”